How to Leverage UGC throughout Your Store to Boost Conversions
With so much competition in the eCommerce world, it’s important to create a smooth customer journey to keep potential buyers on track to purchase. Your goal should be to convert more customers at each stage, from the moment they arrive in your virtual shop to the moment they click that all-important “buy” button.
User-generated content (UGC) is one of the most powerful tools you can use to increase your conversions. This is because 93% of consumers consider UGC to be incredibly helpful when making a purchasing decision. As a result, stores have seen over a 50% conversion rate on pages that feature UGC of some kind.
Why You Should Use UGC in Your Store
Sprinkling UGC throughout your store’s sales cycle achieves several things:
- It creates social proof for your brand. Consumers feel more comfortable making a purchase from a store when they see others doing it already.
- It proves your products’ value. UGC like reviews, ratings, and testimonials give potential buyers extra information they need to make a purchase.
- It builds trust and credibility. Knowing that you already have a loyal customer base will ensure new customers feel ready to buy from you.
So how can you make the most of UGC? Here’s where to showcase it throughout your store to maximize your conversion rate.
UGC On Your Store’s Homepage
Your store’s homepage is your virtual storefront.
This is where a lot of potential customers will land, so sharing UGC with them at this stage will instantly create trust and credibility. Knowing that other customers have already made purchases with you (and enjoyed those purchases) is the perfect incentive for new buyers to keep pushing through the sales funnel.
According to this piece by Forbes, 84% of millennial consumers say that UGC on a store website has at least some influence on what they buy. And placing it early on in the journey starts building trust straight away, which means consumers are more likely to make it to the end of the sales cycle.
Here’s how to use UGC on your store’s homepage:
- Populate your homepage with customer reviews of your best-selling products
- Share a slider of customer-generated photos
- Feature a video of a customer story
Old Navy has a section at the bottom of their homepage dedicated to customer photos. They pull in images from their designated Instagram hashtag #sayhi to showcase a range of their products as worn by past customers.
UGC On Product Pages
Research shows that 70% of consumers place reviews by other customers above professionally written marketing content when it comes to persuasive copy.
And there’s no better place to show off your UGC than on your individual product pages. This is the point where potential buyers know what they want to buy and are likely choosing between a couple of different options.
As a result, this is your opportunity to show them why your product is best. Brands that incorporate user-generated product photos at this point see a 25% increase in conversions over brands that use professionally shot product photos.
On top of this, 93% of consumers say that online reviews impact their purchasing decision, which is why product pages that feature ratings and reviews often see a higher conversion rate than those that don’t. Reviews that are the most influential are those that feature personal stories and the pros and cons of a product.
Here’s how to use UGC on your product pages:
- Showcase individual product ratings and reviews
- Encourage customers to share photos with their reviews
- Use customer-generated photos instead of professionally shot photos in your product galleries
- Provide a link to a complete list of product reviews
Tarte combines both user-generated photos and reviews on their product pages. Potential buyers can see a product’s user rating and click through to read reviews, while customer-generated photos are displayed beneath the product description with the option for buyers to add their own to the showcase.
UGC at Checkout
Just because a customer makes it to the checkout, doesn’t mean they’re going to buy. In fact, the average cart abandonment rate is 69.57%, which means the majority of consumers that fill up their carts won’t make a purchase.
As a result, you still have to work hard to convert customers even when they’re right at the end of the sales cycle.
Integrating UGC at the point of checkout will reinforce why a customer is buying something from you. It will give them the last push they need to click the buy button by building on trust that has already been established and showing them what they’d be missing out on if they didn’t make a purchase.
Here’s how to use UGC at checkout:
- Make it possible for customers to see product reviews and ratings while scrolling through their cart
- Add customer stories and reviews to your checkout page
- Showcase other products a customer might like along with its accompanying reviews and rating
Puravida beefs up their order summary page with a selection of product suggestions complete with ratings and reviews.
At this point, a customer is fully in “buy mode”, so showing them other products they might like will give them the nudge they need to add more to their cart. As a result, your conversion rates will increase, as will the average order value of each customer.
UGC is a Powerful Conversion Tactic
UGC, whether it’s reviews, customer-generated photos, or customer stories, is a must-have addition to your online store.
Not only does it build a sense of trust and credibility for your store, but it creates a much slicker sales cycle. The persuasiveness of UGC means buyers that are on the fence are more likely to make it all the way to the checkout point.
It’s important to be strategic with where you place UGC in order to have the most impact. Start by incorporating it in your homepage, sharing it on each individual product page, and sprinkling it throughout the checkout process.
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